Marine zones

Marine zone legislation is about better managing our waterways at a local level to balance the needs of maritime users with local community concerns about amenity.

Marine zones establish controls (including restrictions or prohibitions) on certain types of ships or activities within a specified area of our waterways. An example of the type of restriction that could be enforced via a marine zone is a limitation on jet skis, hovercraft and vessels engaged in waterskiing on a declared stretch of river before 10am on Saturdays and Sundays.

Local government determines the need for marine zones following extensive community consultation and an assessment of options before formally approaching Maritime Safety Queensland for their establishment. Local government are generally responsible for the enforcement of any restrictions or prohibitions within the marine zone.

Guidelines for the development of marine zone proposals have been developed to provide a convenient reference for proposing entities to establish marine zones in line with requirements under the Transport Operations (Marine Safety) Regulation 2016.

Before going out on the water, check whether your destination is a marine zone.

Tallebudgera Creek marine zone


  • A personal watercraft must not be operated in the marine zone.

Noosa River marine zone


  • Recreational operation of personal watercraft (PWC), including jet skis – prohibit the operation of PWC on the Noosa River, upstream of the Noosa Waters inlet and upstream of a line in Weyba Creek. This allows personal watercraft operators to transit within the river channel, within and downstream of Noosa Waters and Noosa Sound to the river mouth, to access the open ocean.
  • Waterskiing – waterskiing is only permitted in the 2 waterski runs between Tewantin and Lake Cooroibah, and between the hours of 8am and 5pm.
  • Freestyling, surfing and wave jumping – this activity is not permitted on the Noosa River. An exemption from this rule has been provided to commercial personal watercraft operating in the Noosa River commercial personal watercraft area. These personal watercraft must comply with all other aspects of marine safety regulations.
  • Hovercraft, airboats and takeoff and landing of aircraft – these activities are not permitted on the Noosa River.
  • Noosa River and lakes – marine zone requirements personal watercraft areas
  • Noosa River and lakes – marine zone requirements waters where waterskiing is allowed between 8am and 5pm

Further information about the Noosa River marine zone from Noosa Shire Council.

On-the-spot fines will be issued to those caught breaching the rules of the marine zones.

For further information contact your local Maritime Safety Queensland regional office.

Last updated
23 January 2023